H-HEALTH NEWS

Feb 21, 2013 10:33 PM by The Associated Press

CDC to investigate LA tuberculosis outbreak

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Local and federal public health officials say they're trying to contain a persistent outbreak of tuberculosis that may have affected more than 4,600 people on Los Angeles' Skid Row.

The Los Angeles Times reports Thursday that 11 deaths have been recorded since 2007 and most of the victims were homeless people living on downtown streets.

County health chief Dr. Jonathan Fielding says the outbreak is the largest in a decade. The outbreak has been linked to one tuberculosis strain that is unique to LA.

Homeless people are at higher risk of contracting tuberculosis because of poor hygiene and ongoing contact with infected people.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has dispatched scientists to help local health officials curb the spread of the disease.

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